New Teaching Skills Program Debuts at the LC

By Allison Fitch-Markham

content imageFor the first time at the University of Calgary, the Teaching & Learning Centre is offering the Instructional Skills Workshop (ISW) program to university faculty members and graduate students. Attendees can review key teaching concepts, build on existing skills, and practice new teaching approaches. While the ISW program has a long–standing history in providing teaching support, the program debuts at the U of C this spring.

The four–day ISW workshops involve a unique and intensive combination of educational theory, applications, discussion and practicum. The program covers a wide range of teaching and learning topics, such as questioning skills and evaluations of student learning. Each attendee will actively practice their teaching by giving short lessons in a group setting. Program facilitators will also model teaching styles and concepts. Many instructors find the workshops particularly helpful to share ideas with peers and get immediate feedback from fellow instructors from a wide variety of faculties.

The ISW program provides several benefits. Instructors have the opportunity to rethink and refine their teaching and learning style. The workshops also provide several new approaches teachers can use in their courses, including techniques to encourage interaction in the classroom and better gauge student learning. The program is helpful for graduate students who are starting teaching assistant positions or who are considering teaching as a profession. Most importantly, the program helps all instructors – new and seasoned – build confidence in their teaching skills.

The ISW program began in 1978 and has been used extensively by the University of British Columbia and many other universities across North America. At the U of C, ISW is a prerequisite for graduate students interested in taking the University Teaching Certificate program. ISW is also taught separately to professors without prior requirements.

The ISW workshops are part of a comprehensive listing of programs and services provided by the Teaching & Learning Centre. The Teaching & Learning Centre also offers teaching certificates, individual consultation, and technology and media tools designed to help teachers enhance their skills and provide a better learning experience to their students.

The Teaching & Learning Centre is currently holding the ISW program at several convenient times between May 2005 and March 2006. For more information about upcoming programs or to register, please contact Mary–Jane Leeder at 220–3493 or mjleeder@ucalgary.ca. As the workshops are held in small group settings, space is limited.

Connect with us: 5th Floor Bio Sciences, Phone: 403-220-4949 Email:lcfeedbk@ucalgary.ca

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